Nov 3, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys receiver Dwayne Harris (17) prior to the game against the Minnesota Vikings at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Expect a Solid Dallas Cowboys 2014 Draft Under Will McClay


The 2014 NFL Draft can not get here fast enough. Yes, I’m a writer, but I’m also a very proud member of Cowboy Nation. I’m ready to see articles based on facts and numbers. The speculation about the Cowboys first round draft pick being Johnny Manziel is at an all time high. Manziel becoming a Cowboy with the 16th pick will not happen. Thanks to the power of search engines, I just gained 250,000 readers by using Manziel, Cowboys, 16th pick, and NFL Draft in this paragraph. From an insider, it’s media manipulation, so don’t believe the hype!

I’ve been blasted for reporting that this has been the Cowboys best off-season ever (Click Here for Article). Since I wrote that article, it has only gotten better. They resigned 30 year old Anthony Spencer. He’s not glad to be back. The Cowboys were his only option following microfracture knee surgery and being 30, other teams took a look, kicked the tires and passed. This is how the guy we made a franchise player in 2012 and 2013 goes from earning a combined 19.4 million to a base salary of 1.25 million with incentives based on sacks and health.

Our owner Jerry Jones doesn’t get much credit for anything except not being Donald Sterling (That’s another 125,000 readers). I’ve seen your comments – Don’t use Jerry Jones, logic and draft in the same sentence, etc. etc. This is in addition to your cries that we need a new owner and GM. This off-season we’ve signed four defensive linemen and a former first round draft pick as a backup quarterback. All of the defensive line signings have the approval of Rod Marinelli and provide much needed quality depth at affordable prices. We still have the potential to add more talent to the defensive line with 11 draft picks. Smart moves have been made this off-season and since they don’t have no awards for that (trophies), I tip my cap to the Cowboys front office.

I don’t predict us having a bad draft. If you’ve followed the inner workings of the Cowboys, you know that Will McClay has been doing an excellent job in finding and evaluating players. McClay is the assistant director of player personnel and he’s putting together our draft board. Be patient. I expect few surprises with McClay orchestrating the show.

All of the focus on defense has gotten Cowboy Nation to forget the addition of Scott Linehan to the coaching staff. I’m sure he’ll get a toy or two in this years draft. Jerry Jones may have the final word, but like a wise man, he listens to his advisors and coaches. There are respected football guys in the room – Marinelli, Linehan, Kiffin, Callahan. I’m sure there will be more positive vibes among Cowboy Nation after this draft.

It’ll help to silence the unfaithful in Cowboy Nation that are claiming another 8 – 8 season or worse. Right now, our season record is just based on the team name of our opponent. We could be dramatically better in multiple positions after the NFL draft. The phrase – “On any given Sunday you’re gonna win or you’re gonna lose.” – exists for a reason. Can we finalize a team and actually take the field before you “realistic” fans predict how awful we’ll be?

#GoCowboys

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  • Earl Robertson

    I agree that this head scout has made a difference in the draft. If Cowboys pick good this year which thy have to to have any shot of winning division then this head scout will get all kinds of offers to be a GM. It is time for Jerry to promote this guy to a GM title. I know Jerry will have final say no matter what but cowboys can’t afford this guy to leave. The fact that he has done so well in getting guys off the street during the season shows to me what he is worth!

    • baronmwd

      I think Dallas has as good as chance that anyone has at winning our division even if we don’t have a great draft. Remember 3 seasons in a row we were just one win away from being NFC East champs. If we weren’t so hindered by injuries over the last 2 seasons we would have won 1-2 more games which would have left us as division champs. I agree a good draft will go along way in helping us get over the hump. I have a really good feeling about this draft. This will be a very rare draft that a team can miss on there 1st round pick & still end up with a good draft. Rounds 2-5 are so deep with talent. So many 2nd round players are going to have 1st round talent. I’m confident that even Jerry could screw this year’s draft up. LOL

      • Robert H. Carroll

        I don’t see us missing in this years draft. We’ve always had talented players on our rosters. Where Jerry has failed us as GM is not hiring a real coach after Bill Parcells. I do like our coaching staff, but our Cowboys are out-coaching their opponents.

  • PaulTX

    What I am encouraged about more than anything is the change in cap management. It seems Dallas is getting smarter. Losing Austin and Ware was a big help, but also the Melton and Spencer deals were very well done. Now, if our drafting gets better, we might have a playoff run before Romo retires.

    • Old Frog

      Progress has been made on the cap but as soon as you add Smith and Bryant to Romo and Carr it won’t look so good anymore.

      • PaulTX

        That’s true. I have an article I wrote on this. Basically, you can only afford to pay your blindside OT and QB big contracts and one or two defensive guys, I suggested pass rushers. The rest of the guys you have to cycle through draft picks and free agents. WR and CB are both positions that I do not value. There’s a reason why, but it’s a long explanation.

        • Old Frog

          I agree with you to a point but try to convince the Bryant fans. It’s a tough sell. They are convinced he’s worth $12 million a year…or more.

          • PaulTX

            I’m a Bryant fan myself. My article is called the NFL Moneyball. It’s about putting your money in the best places. It’s all about having a great QB and line. For $12 million you can have one Pro-Bowl receiver or a Pro-Bowl Guard AND Pro-Bowl Center. I would choose the latter. After 3-4 seasons, my system is in place, and it works well.

          • Earl Robertson

            Yes it isn’t very hard to figure out, the game of football is won in the trenches and you have to have a qb that can make plays and not turn the ball over if you have that you will win a lot of games look at Dallas in the 90s and the Patriots of the 2000s

          • PaulTX

            Offense yes. Line guys. Guards, Centers, and non-blindside Tackles are cheap. Defense trenches, sort of. Depends on the defense. In the Tampa 2, my big money guys are RDE, 3DT, and FS. Then I start putting money into LBs. In the 3-4 Dallas played before, it’s OLBs and CBs.

          • Old Frog

            I agree but fans are paying to see acrobatic receptions, interceptions, sacks, and 40+ points per game so that’s what the owners are focused on providing. I think the O line is an after thought for most NFL fans who don’t fully appreciate the contribution they make towards receptions and points while preventing interceptions and sacks.

          • PaulTX

            I prefer Super Bowls. Look at Cleveland, Oakland and other teams that consistently get top picks in the draft. They pick flash players, and you see where they are at.

  • Guy Smith

    I think One playoff win in 15 years is reason enough for many fans to be a bit apprehensive, so dont think fans dont know what they;re talking about.

  • Chad

    I think I’ll continue to expect the worst, and hope for the best. Easier on the liver & kidneys that way. Hahaha

  • AFan

    I thought that this was honest, very well written, and I for one would like to tip my hat to a fello DC native Cowboys fan. I especially liked the part when you said that there were “respected football guys in the room,” and you left out Jason Garrett. No.. seriously… that was awesome.

    • Robert H. Carroll

      Thanks! I’m honest in these articles. Garrett hasn’t earned it yet. Just how I see it and I’m glad you noticed it.

  • stylz1996

    Nice article. Good points thanks

  • Ashley Coonfield

    I enjoyed the article, but don’t dismiss Manziel at 16. If he makes it there I can easily see Jerry taking him.

  • billy

    since the team put together the players they did in free agency and now looking at the draft im thinking they may be surprisingly good this year. now that is if all their injuries clear up and their players have decent years and stay relatively healthy.to tell you the truth i really feel they did pretty well at 8 and 8 the last couple of years considering the injuries and what jerry and wade did to the team in 08 and 09. that was criminal and i hope nothing like those drafts ever happen again. those two or maybe three years drafts have robbed the team of its core players. so far that has been almost impossible to overcome. especially when you have some injuries theres no backups. maybe we are going to get past that pretty soon with better drafts. as far as dez goes , i say let someone else pay him more than hes worth. just keep on drafting a good young receiver every year or two and let them go when they get their second contract if they are going to get too expensive like dez is about to do. new england has made it for years like that . of course they have a great qb which you have to have if you want to contend but they have pretty well proved you dont have to have high priced receivers.

  • BradAustin

    The Cowboy scouting department is the most overlooked part of our organization. Maybe the only part that’s been doing their job well. Just look at what we did at DL last year when it was torn to absolute shambles. We basically had 1 1/2 of the 4 projected starters on the field. Hatcher and a hobbled Ware. Their main back-up with any real talent was gone as well (Crawford). We still had issues but coulda been much worse if they wouldn’t have found at least some decent production from guys most never heard of.

    Not to mention they traded back last year and got a gem in Frederick they had ranked as a high 2nd round. Many other teams and experts rated him as a 3rd. The addition of Fredrick was HUGE to our line going from the gutter to at least formidable. And it’ll only rise from where we are.

    Great article with giving deserving praise to an excellent scouting department. With such a deep draft I have no doubt they’ll set us up nicely.